- Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson
Trade ed. ISBN 978-0-06-242267-5 $17.99
E-book ed. ISBN 978-0-06-242269-9 $9.99
Reviewed from galleys R* Gr. 8–12
When her best friend, Monday, goes missing from her home in the D.C. projects, middle-schooler Claudia can’t understand why no one seems concerned. Her parents are sure Monday will turn up soon, the teachers barely remember her, and Monday’s older sister is refusing to talk to Claudia. Days turn into weeks and months, and still no one cares, leaving Claudia to figure out what happened to Monday and who is responsible. The story moves across multiple timelines, showing Claudia and Monday’s friendship before Monday went missing, Claudia’s search for Monday, and the aftermath of what Claudia finds. Readers will begin to notice, however, when Claudia’s voice becomes increasingly erratic and the events she recounts don’t always match up with their according timeline; there’s an added layer of tension to the missing Monday story as Claudia’s trustworthiness as a narrator begins to slide. Jackson effortlessly weaves these elements of suspense with issues of race, class, and gender, casting a harsh light on a world that often refuses to notice the disappearances of black and brown girls; the assumption by nearly every adult that Monday has run away rings with frustrating truth. The twist at the end is both gaspworthy and heartbreaking, speaking to the fragility of the mind and the fractures of a community in the wake of a terrible tragedy.